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Hollywood A-lister Emma Thompson (Beauty and the Beast, Saving Mr. Banks) joined the Swedish panel show, Skavlan, last week to talk about her role as an ambassador for Greenpeace. The interview topics ranged from funny stories — because it is Emma Thompson — to some more serious topics, like climate change.

And, of course, the conversation turned to movie making, reports BBC News.

When asked why she never moved to Hollywood, she says, “I couldn’t. Could you imagine? Every time I have to go to Los Angeles, I think ‘Oh God, I’m too fat to go there.’ They’re not going to let me in!?”

She follows up, backing down a little: “Actually, it’s not true. When I go there, they are always very nice to me. I’m really just doing a gag.”

But, as we all know, there can be some truth to a joke…

Next, the conversation between Thompson and the show’s other panelists turned to ageism and how it can happen anywhere. And then it veered back to weight, and how actresses can become anorexic when they’re trying to live up to the pressures put on them.

Thompson took a moment to relay a story from her experience filming a movie in England, back in 2008. She says, “There was a wonderful actress I was working with on Brideshead Revisited. And the producers said to her, ‘Will you lose some weight?'”

Thompson wasn’t having any of it, and describes how she put herself on the line to save her friend and co-star from going down a road she may not want to: “She was absolutely exquisite. And I said to them, ‘If you speak to her about this, again, on any level, I will leave this picture. You are never to do that.”

Yaaas, queen.

Eventually Thompson interrupts herself mid-story, throwing her head back, exclaiming, “Oh, God. It’s so boring.” She’s bemoaning the fact that a woman’s weight is still an issue in Hollywood. But, she shakes it off and continues: “Sometimes, there are just some subjects, you just have to make noise about. Because it’s SO tedious. And it’s gone on and on.”

Thompson started out as a standup comedian and, aged only 21, she wrote a sketch in which she proclaimed that “auto-cannibalism, where you eat yourself to an optimal weight” is the best diet. Gross, but we take her point.

We’re glad she spoke up — then and now.

You can watch the entire interview below; the conversation turns to Hollywood around 12:47:

In case you need more reasons to adore this outspoken actress, there’s always this Anglo post from a couple of years ago: 10 Reasons We Love Emma Thompson… We may have to revisit this list and add to it.

Do you think Emma makes a good point about Hollywood’s obsession with actresses’ weight?

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Filed Under: Emma Thompson
By Brigid Brown